Thinking of having a change of diet? Try going vegan. Although the vegan diet has been around for quite some time now, its popularity has increased in recent years as people look for more ways to eat healthily.
The ideal vegan diet consists of plant-based foods with nothing from animals. This includes meat and by-products like eggs, cheese, and milk.
This is what differentiates a vegan diet from a vegetarian diet, as vegetarians can still enjoy things like cheese and milk but avoid meat.
Most people who have never tried going vegan always say that it is boring or lacks so many food options, but this is far from the truth. There are people who have been vegan for decades and never run out of what to eat. The problem at times is that people do not explore and know the foods available to them.
This is why today, we will be looking at some healthy Nigerian foods you can enjoy while on a vegan diet.
1. Yam and Tomato Sauce
It does not get easier than this. Yam and tomato sauce is as vegan, as vegan can be. Just be careful not to add eggs or crayfish, as that ruins the point of eating vegan. You can also add green leafy vegetables like spinach to the sauce to make it more healthy.
Yam is a good source of carbohydrates, which provides the body with energy. Tomatoes are loaded with vitamins and other nutrients that would help protect your body from diseases.
Yam and tomato sauce can be eaten at any point during the day. Just be careful not to load your plate with too much, is yam is packed with calories.
2. Jollof Rice and Salad
This is another great vegan option. Rather than top your plate of jollof rice with a serving of turkey or chicken, you can just have it with salad instead. Jollof rice and salad is a very interesting combo that would leave you quite satisfied.
To make your salad, you need vegetables like cabbage, lettuce, carrots, cucumber, and so on. All of these vegetables are bursting with nutrients that your body needs.
3. Beans and Plantain
Who says a vegan diet has to be boring when you have this? Beans and plantain is one dish that a lot of people cannot get enough of.
While you can definitely enjoy beans alone, as it is a good source of plant protein, adding fried plantain to it just makes it more delicious.
Instead of frying the plantain also, you can cook it with the beans so that it comes out soft and tasty. However you make it, beans and plantain should be added to your vegan menu.
4. Moin Moin (steamed bean cake)
If you do not like eating beans as it is, then consider trying some moin moin. Moin moin is such a complete meal, as not only is it nutritious but also quite satisfying. And if you do not want to eat moon moin alone, you can enjoy it with pap or custard or use it as a topping for your jollof rice or any other vegan dish.
5. Yam Pottage
Another nice dish made with yam. Yam pottage is a satisfying, one-pot option that you can never go wrong with. Cook it with your favourite spices, and you can even add plantain to it. Yam porridge is also a great vegan food in Nigeria.
6. Fio Fio
Fio Fio is a popular meal in Nigeria that is prepared from pigeon peas. It is called fio fio in Igbo, waken-masar in Hausa, and otinli in Yoruba. Fio Fio is typically prepared with Achicha Ede and is a healthy vegan food option in Nigeria.
The meal is incredibly rich in protein and high in many essential nutrients. The health benefits of fio fio are numerous.
7. Acha (Fonio)
Acha or fonio (Digitaria exilis) is a tiny variety of millet of grass species that is grown in many parts of Nigeria.
It is a staple cereal that is particularly found in during the dry season. Acha is a healthy whole grain food that can also serve as a vegan food option in Nigeria.
It is known for its abundance of essential nutrients and health benefits.
8. Ose oji and Garden eggs
Ose oji or okwa ose is the Nigerian peanut butter. It is a spicy groundnut paste that can be eaten with a variety of meals. However, the popular fruit eaten with ose oji is garden egg. It is a healthy vegan food.
Abacha is popular food in the South eastern parts of Nigeria. It is prepared with dried shredded cassava, utazi leaves, pepper, potash, red oil, ugba (ukpaka), and diced garden eggs.
It is very nutritious and has a lot of nutritional benefits. Abacha is not a healthy vegan food in Nigeria, but it is also gluten-free.
10. Tiger nuts
Tiger nuts are not actually a nut but a tiny tubers. They are widely sold and eaten in Nigeria.
Tiger nuts are vegan, gluten-free, good for diabetics, and contain a plethora of nutrients. Tiger nut milk is also another vegan food option in Nigeria.
These are just some examples of good vegan meals you can try here in Nigeria, but there are a lot more than that. Any meal you cook without using meat, or any of the other animal bye-products we listed earlier in the article, qualifies as a vegan meal. Just remember to keep it simple and avoid loading up on calories, especially if you are trying to lose weight.
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